Can I call it or what? This morning I was looking like a quite fetching 103 year old. Ooops, I'm only 39! I spent the morning bent over. Well, I felt better after church. Must have been all the standing, sitting, kneeling activity - liimbered me right up.
I have been doing fairs for five years now and have learned a lot along the way. I shudder when I think about my first couple of fairs. Between the things I sold, the way I packaged things and the way I dsiplayed things, its a wonder anything ever sold. The great thing is that every fair I do, I still learn something or have an idea about how I can change things or what I should sell. And that, my friends, is the magic question. If you are thinking of selling at craft fairs and it is a yearly event, attend the fair. Look at who is shopping and what/if they are buying. Make some notes to remind you as you are preparing the next year. The fair that I did yesterday I've been to before. I know the clientele and I konw the things they are most likely to buy versus the things that won't do so well (most of the time - there's always something that surprises me and I always through in a few extras that I don't think are going to sell buy hey, I've got the inventory, might as well try). This fair is very different than my yearly corporate fair. It's a different clientele and their wants/needs are vastly different so I prepared for it differently. I also keep notes of every fair including what sells so that I'll know for the future.
As soon as I walked in yesterday though I was thrown for a loop. I have always had rectangle tables at this fair and planned for the same. This year because the church used its hall, I walked in to find that everyone had large ROUND tables. If my thoughts had been visible...the whole time I was unpacking I was planning/scheming in my head how to make everything work. I have never used a round table before for a fair so I was thinking on the fly.
In the normal course of a fair, I usually have my table which I add a second shelf to and then place my spinners along the end side forming a sort of "L" around me. If I have two tables, I make a "U". Yesterday, I decided to make a pseudo "U" with my displays. I designated one end of my table as dead space and put my spinners along that side. I built my shelves on right angles to each along along the front and somewhat of the other side of the circle. I went in only as far as I thought would not create too much space in front of the shelves. I firmly like the idea of varying heights and never place too much on my original table. When the end of the second shelf ended, I placed my little table with my Christmas tree. There was definitely some dead space in back too that I just couldn't use but Meg was with me so she used that part of the table to read at.
Ignore the draping of the table cloths. My brother was there helping me set up and he was in charge of that (I later fixed it a bit). Want to know my trick with the shelves? Milk crates. Buy two plastic milk crates from Staples. When they are placed side to side, they interlock. I then place a piece of plywood that is slightly bigger than the length and width of the crates. Cover this with a tablecloth and I now have a shelf. I learned this trick fairly early on and it made such a big difference in the appearance of my table. I kept reading that people want to see things are varying heights and they need things at eye level. After several years, I completely agree with this idea.
I think that's enough rambling for today. Have a fantastic night!